November 28, 2017

Three Things I find inspiring about the Royal Engagement of that Younger Son of Princess Diana & that American Lady.

#BlackPrincess trending on Twitter.

I’m no fan of the Royal Family in Britain. I, clearly, can’t be bothered to recall the name of…Prince Harry, that’s it! I do remember him dressing up as a Nazi one (Halloween?) and being so bloody rich his whole life that I, frankly, can’t imagine why I’d look up to him. I look up to those who make something of themselves, not trustafarians on a global scale.

But I do remember that he distinguished himself as a soldier, finding solace in being treated normally for once. I do remember Princess Diana, with affection for her kindness and caring and elegance and sadness, as do we all.

And I’ve admired the taste and caring with which his older brother and wife have comported themselves.

But I think about my dishes more than I do the royal family. I’m struggling to pay for my staff, I spend my days hoping my mom is in good health and my President won’t start a nuclear war or offend our national decency further.

So it is with genuine surprise and pleasure that, this morning, I read about Prince Harry’s engagement. 

Yeah, it’d been announced a few days ago. I didn’t care. But here’s three things worth caring about, from the point of view of the Royal family setting an example to this next generation of humans.

1. She is not what convention ordered. She’s black. She’s American. She’s divorced. Her mother is African-American. For the Royal Family, this represents a stunning development—why, only a generation or two ago, they dethroned a would-be beloved king because he dared become engaged to an American divorcee. And in this age of Trump and Nazis and right-wing political strength even in Germany, a bi-racial princess is a direct arrow to the throat of tolerance. Jolly good show.

“Once upon a time, in 1936, a British monarch named Edward VIII was forbidden to marry his divorced American girlfriend and also be king, so he renounced the throne, moved with her to France and lived not-so-happily ever after…”

2. She’s 36. He’s 33. In a patriarchal world where old boys date young women, this is welcome and impressive. He’s clearly marrying for love, as is she. Their interview (watched via the NY Times) shows that she will be no trophy or silent powerless nodding approving wife. She will be herself. And he loves her for it.

3. She a working woman. Successful, well-off. He might be one of the richest men in the world, and one of its most famous. But he started on third base, and she got there all by herself. Their’s will be a marriage of equality, not cliche.

In a post-Brexit, Trumpish world, this story represents a love story, and nothing more, and nothing less. And that’s what every princess and prince story should be about.

And, for the first time in a long time, the Royal Family has made me care about them, and learn about them, if only a little. They’ve once again become relevant to this multicultural, exciting, liberated world we live in today.

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